Understanding the Causes and Diagnostic Techniques of COPD
COPD is a disease that affects the lungs and makes it difficult to breathe can often be frightening and confusing. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is one such problem that is faced by a lot of people, especially if they are used to smoking. It is a good idea to understand a little bit about it in order to know the causes and effects of this problem.
What is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease?
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD as it is often called, is a combination of different respiratory diseases that together narrow the airways and make it difficult for a person to empty all the air from his lungs. This disease is usually a combination of emphysema and chronic bronchitis or either one of them.
What Causes COPD?
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is most commonly caused by smoke from cigarettes. The particles that are present in the smoke can cause the bronchial tubes to produce an extra amount of mucus which leads to inflammation of the bronchi. When there is excessive mucus in your system, you start to cough and this leads to an increasing amount of phlegm being expelled from the body. Whether you take in large amounts of these particles over a short period of time or small amounts over a long period of time, they can both be equally bad for your health.
Environmental factors and genetic factors can also lead to COPD but they are less common than smoking. Pollutants in the air and passive smoking can be very dangerous to health and they could affect certain individuals. Even though there is no absolute proof that these genes can be passed down in a family, it has been observed in a few cases that members of the same family may be more prone to getting this disease.
Is COPD Contagious?
No, COPD is not infectious so it is not contagious at all. This disease comes about because of the thickening of the airways which leads to a difficulty in breathing. Even though it does tend to affect the older population more than others, it is usually due to other common factors among the population and it is in no way contagious.
There are many different symptoms of COPD, including a cough, wheezing and breathlessness. If you have a persistent cough, a doctor may suspect this disease and conduct a physical examination along with a detailed medical history and a few other tests. The most common test used to detect COPD is spirometry. This makes use of a small machine which you will be made to blow into in order to determine how much air you can hold in your lungs and let out over a fixed period of time. Doctors may also ask people to go in for a few additional tests if they want to rule out other lung diseases.
At Trinity Medical Group, we offer all kinds of primary health services. Our new-age technology and preventive medicines ensure that your entire family is well taken care of. Call Trinity Medical Group to schedule your appointment today.